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Dublin: 3 °C Sunday 24 March, 2019
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Dhara Kivlehan given photo of three-day-old son before her death at Belfast hospital

The inquest into the 29 year old’s death continues today.

Image: Family handout/PA Wire

AN INQUEST YESTERDAY heard that Dhara Kivlehan’s body temperature had dipped so low on the night she was transferred to Belfast’s Victoria Hospital, that it was “unrecordable”.

Earlier in evidence, the Sligo Leitrim Coroner heard from Consultant Anaesthetist Dr Ronan O’Hare who said he had never before seen anything like the rapid deterioration that occurred in Ms Kivlehan’s condition on 24 September 2010 – three days after an emergency caesarean section due to pre-eclampsia and four days before she eventually passed away at Belfast Victoria Hospital.

ShannonsideFM’s Denise Canavan reports that the court also heard from staff at the hospital, including Nurse Karen Muldoon who received Dhara Kivlehan in ICU when she was transferred from Maternity. Nurse Anne McWilliams, who was the night nurse on duty in the ICU on the final two nights of Ms Kivlehan’s stay in Sligo, and who accompanied her during her helicopter transfer to Belfast also gave evidence.

Nurse McWilliams explained that despite numerous efforts to warm her, the young mother’s extremities were so cold because her body was concentrating on keeping her failing organs warm inside.

She also told the court that when the maternity unit was contacted about Ms Kivlehan’s transfer, a staff member arrived with a photo of her three-day-old newborn son Dior to give to her to bring to Belfast.

Earlier under cross examination, Consultant Anaesthetist Dr Ronan O’Hare admitted to the court that even specialised one-to-one care outside of the ICU – like that which Ms Kivlehan received in the maternity ward – is not the same quality as being in intensive care.

Today, the court is due to hear from another Consultant Anaesthetist in Sligo Dr Seamus Crowley and Haemotologist Dr Andrew Hodgson.

Reporting by Denise Canavan. Published with permission of Shannonside, Longford, Roscommon and South Leitrim radio. See more at their website and follow them on Twitter @ShannonsideNews and @DeniseCanavan.

Read: Dhara Kivlehan inquest: Delay of 36 hours between diagnosis and transfer for special care

More: Doctor describes ‘error’ as hospital failed to look at Dhara Kivlehan’s blood tests for 12 hours 

Timeline: Search for answers after death of Dhara Kivlehan

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